Dorm plan moving forward

Press Release

Plans to build a dormitory on the Corning Community College campus are moving forward, as the college’s trustees gave their approval at Wednesday’s meeting.

The plan is to build a dormitory that would house 300 students, plus residence life staff, said Dr. Katherine Douglass, the college’s president.

It would cost somewhere between $12 million to $14 million, and if all goes according to plan, construction will begin in the spring, and it will open to students in the fall of 2013, Douglass said.

No public funding would be used for the project, she noted.

Instead, CCC would seek bonding, and would repay the costs over the long term with rooming fees collected from students. The cost for students would be approximately $3,700 per semester.

The demand is definitely there, Douglass said.

“Because of the quality of a community college education – coupled with the economics of higher education – more and students are coming to Corning Community College directly out of high school, and those students are looking for a complete college experience,” she said. “They’re looking for a residential life.”

And it will enhance the college because more students will attend athletic events and cultural offerings if they’re living on campus, Douglass feels.

Tom Blumer, president of CCC’s Board of Trustees, also feels the dorm will be a great addition.

“When we talk to individual students, they say they wish we had it,” Blumer said. “When we talk to parents of high school students, they say, ‘We’d really like our kids to have that residential experience, and we can’t do it at CCC, and we want to keep them here.’ We have lots and lots of reasons why this makes sense.”

The dorm will be an L-shaped building located behind The Commons, which houses the cafeteria, student center and Triangle Lounge.

The dorm will be in the heart of the campus and will also be a quick walk to the library, classroom buildings and the gymnasium.

“What our studies have shown is that students want access to food, they want access to fitness, and they want access to learning,” Blumer said.

A parking area will be designated for residents, he added.

The college’s Development Foundation has coordinated year-long studies that looked at student demand, architectural and engineering options, cost estimates and financing options. The results of the studies were reviewed by the Development Foundation and the trustees in recent weeks, leading to Wednesday’s approval.

The next steps are to secure financing, and then begin the state environmental review process required for any such large building, Blumer said.

“The train is moving,” he said. “The train has left the station.”